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The Wall Street Journal To Launch Islamic and Ethical Finance Conference

Selling us down the river, one institution at a time. From AMEInfo (with thanks to Jeffrey Imm):

Islamic finance, the fastest-growing of all the financial sectors around the world, will be the focus of a full-day event at DIFCweek, November 17 - 23.

The event, held in association with The Wall Street Journal, will be entitled Islamic and Ethical Finance, and marks the first collaboration of its kind between Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) and the world's leading business publication.

The appetite for Shariah products for consumers and investors worldwide is increasing exponentially, with the current Islamic finance market estimated at $500 billion with expected annual growth of 10 to 15 per cent.

Meanwhile, financial capitals around the world, regardless of their location, are expanding their infrastructure to build sound and regulated Islamic finance systems.

Nasser Al Shaali, CEO of DIFC Authority, said: 'Islamic banking has contributed to economic development in many Muslim countries. And, there have also been substantial benefits to institutions, investors, companies and economies that are not necessarily a part of the Muslim world.

'Globally, the increased intermediation provided by Islamic instruments has helped unlock assets previously unavailable to global capital markets. It has also increased the efficiency with which capital can be allocated, both within the Muslim world and internationally.

'Non-Islamic institutions and governments are issuing Islamic securities, while non-Islamic investors are purchasing Sharia-compliant securities. This means greater access to funding, investment channels, innovation and opportunities for both Islamic and non-Islamic investors,' he added.

"The Wall Street Journal is delighted to be associated with DIFCweek," said Michael Bergmeijer, managing director, Dow Jones consumer media group in Europe.

"The Middle East offers exciting economic growth opportunities, and we support the work the DIFC does in contributing to the overall development of the region and in its advancement of Islamic and ethical finance - themes we'll be exploring in more detail at our conference in November." ...